Advice blogger Eli Kaplan bemoans Esquire’s “Ladies, You’re Not As Good As You Think”, which tells women how bad they are in bed.
Recently, I read a bizarre article in Esquire by Chris Jones called, Ladies, You’re Not As Good As You Think. The Chris Jones I’m familiar with is the quirky young man who starred on this season of Top Chef (Texas), and is the Chef de Cuisine at Moto Restaurant (Chicago). MY Chris Jones is known for his risky and original/strange food, as well as equally original/strange personality and style choices – top ponytail, sandals with socks, and two sets of glasses on the head at the same time. That Chris Jones is a talented chef, and he seems like a funny guy and good dude.
But, for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why he would be writing sex/relationship articles for Esquire. Still, the strange taste that was left in my mouth, after reading “Ladies: You’re Not as Good as You Think”, made me believe the author really could be MY Chris Jones.
Well, as it turns out, I was wrong. Chef Chris Jones and Esquire’s Chris Jones are two totally different beasts (I guess it is a pretty common name). Chef Chris Jones is a wacky chef. Esquire’s Chris Jones is just wacky—at least in this particular case. Chris Jones’s (Esquire) article is mainly about how women think they’re much better in the sack then they are, and how if you want better sex, you (as a woman) have to look at yourself, take ownership of your insecurities, and loosen up.
While Chris Jones (Esquire) makes some good points—promoting communication with your partner(s), taking responsibility for your own choices and actions, become the master of your sexual domain—his article (advice column?) still misses the mark… badly. Not only does it read as mostly a blame piece, and a condescending warning to women to get their acts together, or no one’s ever gonna enjoy having sex with you… it is also socially irresponsible.
Women and men are not equal beings when it comes to sexual liberation. In a perfect world they would be equals, of course. Unfortunately, we live in a society that applauds men for their sexual conquests, and shames women for the same type of behavior. Wilt Chamberlain was hailed equally (in most circles) for his scoring prowess ON the basketball court (31,419 career points, and 100 in one game), as he was for his scoring prowess OFF the court (allegedly sleeping with over 2,000 women in his lifetime). On the other hand, Jenna Jameson is just a lowly, trashy pornstar for fucking her way to the top (the top of what, I’m not certain). Monica Lewinsky (and her reputation) left the Bill Clinton sex scandal, much worse for the wear compared to what our president—the leader of our country at the time—suffered. Men (in many parts of the world) are (societally) allowed to be polygamists. Women… not so much. The examples can continue (the list is long), but that’s not the point.
Chris Jones’s article urges women (for their own good) to loosen up. It’s not a bad idea. Unfortunately, society constantly warns women of the severe repercussions of being too loose. To complain about women being too guarded in the bedroom, without addressing this societal pressure and gender expectation inequalities (at least, in passing) is very short-sighted.
Perhaps Chris Jones was watching “Fight Club” recently, and he had a bitter moment where he realized he wanted to be the sex-god, warrior, and dream boat -Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), but in fact he’s really more like the insecure/average Ed Norton’s character. Apparently, Esquire readers had to bear the brunt of Mr. Jones’s jonesing,by being subjected to “Ladies: You’re Not as Good as You Think”. I’m not even sure I want to know what that title implies (even though it’s extremely straightforward). Would Chris Jones feel better if all sexually underachieving (or overconfident) women were forced to wear a scarlet “U” or “O”, so all of society would have knowledge of their intimacy issues?
Such blame is counterproductive and unnecessary. When I want those around me to improve as friends, lovers, bandmates, blog partners, etc… I first look at myself to see how I can inspire and lead by example. As a sex/dating/relationship advice writer, the “He Said” of She Said He Said, I (along with my writing partner Josie Schroeder) have to make it my job, business, and passion to care enough about the parties involved to genuinely investigate all sides of the story/issue.
I’m also often struck by how different, eye-opening, and equally legitimate Josie’s “She Said” perspectives are from my side of things. That doesn’t mean that sexual intimacy is no place for joking, it just means that (in this case) Chris Jones’s jokes aren’t funny. Telling someone they suck, especially at something as intimate as sex, and insisting a woman loosen up (or else), without recognizing the internal dialogue a woman must constantly wrestle with (between her desires and societies desires for her) is in poor taste.
Chris Jones (Esquire): I love a risk taker, but I just can’t get on board with what you’ve cooked up. Check please!
For more sex and dating advice from Eli Kaplan, visit his blog.
Photo courtesy of kyz